Tuesday, December 30, 2008

better late than never?

The candles were carefully positioned to lean, of course. Alanis was not given an opportunity to sample any of them.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Alanis takes up a new hobby

Alanis decided to take up pruning. The other night she started nibbling on the leaves of my 8-yr-old hibiscus plant. It's a special plant because a friend gave it to me after my husband died. I've had to prune it sometimes because it tends to get scraggly, especially in this house where it doesn't get enough light. Late in the summer, it blooms with vermillion flowers.

It was sitting by the front window with leaves like this:

The yellow parts are from the flash.

Alanis' attentions left leaves looking like this.
When I said, "Alanis, no," she stopped. A couple of hours later I was lying in bed, just getting to sleep when I heard pad, pad, pad downstairs, followed by rustle, rustle. I ran downstairs and caught her with a leaf sticking out of her mouth. I took it away and hauled the huge plant over to the kitchen counter. Aside from the fact that many houseplants are poisonous to dogs, I can't have her grazing on it every time she wants a snack.

I guess the green beans and snap peas I give her just aren't enough.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Spell that "chutzpaw"

In case you didn't see this little news story:
"A thief remained at large after pulling off a daring heist in the pet-food aisle of a supermarket in Murray, Utah. Surveillance video at the market caught a dog shoplifting, KSL-TV reported. The video showed the dog walking in the front door of Smith's Food & Drug and heading straight to Aisle 16, the pet-food aisle, where it grabbed a bone worth $2.79. THe pooch wasn't even perturbed by a face-to-face confrontation with store manager Roger Adamson. 'I looked at him. I said "Drop it!"'Adamson said. 'He looked at me and I looked at him, and he ran for the door and away he went, right out the front door.'"

I'll bet there are dogs on this blog circuit who would have gone for the $5.99 variety at least.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

too much snow

Where have all the bugs gone?

OK, had enough. Ready to see green grass again.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

the hens don't like snow

Everybody stayed inside the tarp-covered barn (L)until I scattered some grain and Punkster stepped out, only to disapprove.

The others peered out but that was as close as they wanted to get to any snow.

Meanwhile, Alanis checked out the cup that held the grain

and took it to a place where she could settle in for an investigation.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Verrrrry Cold

Along with most of the country, we're having unusually cold weather. It began Saturday night with snow falling on wet ground, rapidly turning to ice. A week's worth of temps ranging from 15 to 30 F is predicted, along with more snow. The chickens don't like it! Nobody does. The hens are spending much of the day inside their barn, which I've wrapped with a tarp to keep out drafts.

Then there's the water problem. The barn (a tiny coop shaped like a barn) is too small to put the waterer inside. I ransacked the garage today searching for the heated waterer I used to have but it seems to have disappeared in one of my several moves over the last 8 yrs. Guess I'll be checking the water several times a day.

Like most Airedales, Alanis frisked through the snow when she first saw it. Now it's ho-hum, just stuff on the ground. The stuff on the ground, however, is preventing us from taking our usual walks because I don't want to slip on the ice. People are just made wrong--dogs don't fall on ice.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

She played!

I was sitting in the living room, reading when I heard squeak, squeak behind me. Quietly, I turned and watched Alanis chewing on her disc-shaped fuzzy toy with her size XL Airedale canines. Then she used her front teeth to pull at the fleece. Play!

I jumped out of the chair and we each did a play-bow toward each other before I grabbed the toy, squeaked it, and tossed it across the room. She ran after it and pounced. Then she ran back to me.

No, she did not retrieve the toy. I didn't expect her to. Some Airedales will retrieve; but most prefer to run after the object and either grab it and run, expecting you to give chase, or pounce on it and then indicate that you should retrieve it. After all, you were the one who threw it away.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Alanis and the chickens

I toss the leftover parrot cooked food into the chicken pen. Six chickens rush over and start pecking at the beans and peas. Alanis stands for a moment, watching as I start up the rock stairway to the upper part of the yard. When I’m too far away to grab her, she rushes at the pen, bouncing happily when the chickens scatter.

From the top of the stairs I yell, “Lanis, no.” Remarkably, she trots away from the pen to the nearby trees to scuff in the leaves and scratch her back under low-hanging branches. At least I know what she would do if the chickens were loose. Flappy-squawky toys!

Earlier today I spent some time at Target looking for the right dish. It had to be plastic, not metal. It could not be a bowl. It had to have enough depth to hold at least a half cup of water. It had to be cheap because I didn’t know if she would eat from it. Sadly, I had to pass up the cute child’s bowl with the monster printed on the bottom in favor of the plain black dish. These dishes are made of melamine. Just what we want touching our food.